David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
8/17/05 6:05 p.m.

Okay, time to address a few different items regarding the Civic.

Paint: Tonight we dropped off the car at Maitland Auto Body for the paint work. While looking at the car this evening, all of us involved decided that in the long run it would be easier and cheaper to replace the front bumper cover rather than fix it. The piece on the car is buggered-up and tweaked a bit. A new aftermarket bumper cover should do the trick, and we're going to keep the grilles black, just like the stock piece. The paint should be done in about a week or so. The shop can be reached at 407-628-1117, by the way.

Bar: We heard from Comptech today, and a rear anti-roll bar is on its way. We have their rear bars on our 2000 and 2002 Civic Si's, and the piece is trick--a machined aluminum brace distributes the load and prevents the dreaded torn subframe, a common occurrence on Hondas that aren't so beefed up. Comptech parts are almost too nice to hide under the vehicle, so maybe we'll periodically jack up the car and hold public viewing sessions. (Technically the piece is for the DC2 Acura Integra, but the chassis are more or less the same.)

Ride: A little update on our Ground Control springs. They're not too bad around town, and it doesn't look like we're mashing the bumpstops. Yes, they're stiff, but they're not unbearable. We'd call them aggressive, but the on-track performance is worth it. Not constantly crashing into the bumpstops is nice. Once the rear Comptech bar is in place, the handling should all come together.

Stuff: Once the car is repainted, we'll install our new windshield moldings. They came from Majestic Honda, who have very nice prices on genuine Honda parts. Yes, you have to pay for shipping and handling, but it's still a good deal in the long run.

We also have to give a digital shout-out to the members of Honda-tech.com. Have a technical question about your Honda? Someone there can probably help. Want to see how your Civic would look in a non-stock color or with a different set of wheels? A quick search will usually turn up the answer. Want to talk to some Honda Challenge racers or Civic autocrossers? That's also the place.

Before this past weekend's autocross, we bedded in the brakes again, following James Walker's advice: eight back-to-back 60-to-10 stops. That seems to be just what the doctor ordered.

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